This pattern is used with all the modal verbs except dare, with a variety of meanings. These include:
MODAL have -edThe modal verb is followed by have and the '-ed' form of another verb. The three verbs together form the verb group. The '-ed' form may be of the auxiliary verb be, with another verb following it. In this chapter we treat the auxiliary be and the following verb together as the '-ed' form (see Section 1 above).
|I||would||have||been told||about any complaints.|
drawing a conclusion about the past e.g. can(not), may
drawing a conclusion about the present e.g. will, would
talking about something that was possible but did not happen e.g. could, might
talking about something that will be true in the future e.g. shall, should
talking about something that you think was unnecessary or that you disapprove of e.g. need (not), would (not)
If Jane had shouted back, she could have won the day. Sadly, she didn't.
The picture came out of a magazine or newspaper. Some kids got hold of it and it may have been passed around the school.
If this had happened, he might have drunk less and been a better statesman.
At one time Berti's place must have been part of the cottage and this half had been for beasts and storage.
She needn't have worried.
I would never have done what they did.